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Report on Great Sitkin (United States) — 12 May-18 May 2021


Great Sitkin

Smithsonian / US Geological Survey Weekly Volcanic Activity Report,
12 May-18 May 2021
Managing Editor: Sally Kuhn Sennert

Please cite this report as:

Global Volcanism Program, 2021. Report on Great Sitkin (United States). In: Sennert, S K (ed.), Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 12 May-18 May 2021. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.

Weekly Report (12 May-18 May 2021)

Great Sitkin

United States

52.076°N, 176.13°W; summit elev. 1740 m

All times are local (unless otherwise noted)


AVO reported that elevated surface temperatures at Great Sitkin had been identified in satellite images since January and had been increasing in frequency during the previous two months. A minor increase in seismicity began to be recorded on 9 May and volcanic gas emissions increased on 10 May. AVO raised the Aviation Color Code to Yellow and the Volcano Alert Level to Advisory on 12 May.

Geological Summary. The Great Sitkin volcano forms much of the northern side of Great Sitkin Island. A younger parasitic volcano capped by a small, 0.8 x 1.2 km ice-filled summit caldera was constructed within a large late-Pleistocene or early Holocene scarp formed by massive edifice failure that truncated an ancestral volcano and produced a submarine debris avalanche. Deposits from this and an older debris avalanche from a source to the south cover a broad area of the ocean floor north of the volcano. The summit lies along the eastern rim of the younger collapse scarp. Deposits from an earlier caldera-forming eruption of unknown age cover the flanks of the island to a depth up to 6 m. The small younger caldera was partially filled by lava domes emplaced in 1945 and 1974, and five small older flank lava domes, two of which lie on the coastline, were constructed along northwest- and NNW-trending lines. Hot springs, mud pots, and fumaroles occur near the head of Big Fox Creek, south of the volcano. Historical eruptions have been recorded since the late-19th century.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)